Reason For Reform

Like all impassioned political debates, there is a reason to be on both sides of the immigration divide.

If you are against immigration, you are likely afraid of what these new people might bring to the US. They could bring lower cost labor and cause you to lose your job. They could bring crime or worse. They could bring additional votes that would cause your political party to lose more of its power and weight.

But if you are for immigration, you are excited about what these new people will bring.

And I am most decidedly on the pro-immigration side, even though I understand the anti-immigration arguments.

The reasons I want to reform our immigration laws have mostly to do with opportunity, innovation, and our economy.

Let’s look at NY State.

Immigrants now account for 23 percent of all residents of New York State. More strikingly, they make up more than a quarter of all STEM workers. A third of all entrepreneurs in the state are immigrants and their businesses alone employ just shy of 500,000 people. And this is only the private companies. New York is additionally home to 55 large Fortune 500 companies, more than half of which were started by immigrants or their children.

Since the earliest days of the US, immigrants have been coming to our country and building things, often businesses that employ our citizens.

The tech sector is pro-immigration because it benefits from immigration and because it was created, at least in part, by immigrants. Unlike some sectors of our society, tech has not forgotten where it came from.

If you too have reasons to support pro-immigration reform, then you might want to participate in a “day of action” today called Reason For Reform.

The Partnership for a New American Economy’s (NAE) Reason for Reform campaign is a way to put a face on our current immigration system which is badly in need of reform.  NAE is gathering stories and videos in every single congressional district across the country showing how immigration benefits the local community and why reform is so necessary.  They’re getting business leaders, farmers, entrepreneurs, students, faith leaders, and others to record their #ReasonForReform on cell phones or computers, which will then be sent to members of Congress and shared through social media.

If this is for you, visit Reason For Reform to tell Congress and America what immigration means to you. And you can check out what’s going on in your state here.


Comments (Archived):

  1. James Ferguson @kWIQly

    Not sure on the US facts but in the UK immigrants are far better qualified that UK born citizens on average and create more jobs.They also diversify – and in the long term diversification increases understanding, and understanding underpins peace.So your choices today effect not only you and your job, but the world, its culture and the likelihood of war.Disclosure : I am an immigrant and started a tech startup which now employs people

    1. jason wright

      If they’re not EU citizens they have to be.

  2. William Mougayar

    I like these non-partisan programs that are not seen to be as part of a Democrat vs. Republican thing. Maybe this is the future of politics and governance: bottoms-up initiatives that just make sense, and without the encumbrance of party initiated politics. After all, government should work for the people, so why not give these direct voices more volume in making change happen.

    1. Matt Kruza

      Off topic but figured best place to ask you. What do you think of bitcoin theft? Upwards of 60 million i think. If bitcoin which is what 6 years old now and most well developed and can’t stop this…isn’t this a huge black mark showing how human involvement (and current legal process and bank involvement) might be needed and way superior to 100% technological solution which is seeming to have many flaws? Would be curious to see fred do a post on this too, but figured to get your opinion. Haven’t researched the 60 million theft in detail so perhaps I am misinterpreting.

      1. Valentin

        Right now you might be right in that 100% technological solutions still have major problems. But I think these problems can be fixed and they will be fixed with time and experience. Bitcoin might be six years old but the large exchanges are not and at first there was no need to really ramp up security simply because there wasn’t enough value to gain in these kind of hacking attacks when Bitcoin wasn’t as popular. Also, it will be really difficult and dangerous to sell the stolen Bitcoin since it might be possible to track the hacker if he does this. I think that the hacker might have known this and actually made his money by shorting either bitcoin or the stock of bitcoin related companies and exchanges before the attack. That way it can’t be easily traced and penalized. There are also some who say that this attack couldn’t be done without inside help and that there might be someone inside the company who helped the hacker(s). This is only a rumor and I can’t really say anything about it because I don’t know how the attack worked. But that would actually mean that the technology wasn’t the problem.

        1. Matt Kruza

          Maybe it wasn’t technology per se, but the technology (or so it seems to a lay person here) is advocating not really being tied to human interaction / subjectivity. If someone stole $60 million form jp morgan, the client would be reimbursed and a legal process initiated. I guess in this case that may happen too? Except i doubt the exchange has $60 milllion to pay. I am not a big believer that bitcoin is very worthy at all (as i have said for years now, right or wrong), so perhaps i am loooking to harshly at bitcoin, but it does feel like this combined with the dao / ethereum disaster will chill the space for a while

      2. William Mougayar

        Although this is bad psychologically, the issue was caused by the particular exchange itself (Bitfinex based in HK), not the Bitcoin network in general.Exchanges have a responsibility to be as secure as your online banking access. Sadly, every exchange has their own implementation ways, and nobody audits them on the security front. Maybe there ought to be some standards along the way.

    2. JLM

      .Wm, what a perfectly charming idea and one that will work in about any middle school student council election.The system is rigged and toxic and self-perpetuating. It is all the damn money getting them elected and all the money they can dole out and influence thereafter.The primary job of every elected official is to get re-elected and that takes money >>>>>>>>>>>> and the cycle begins.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  3. William Mougayar

    3 areas where the US can learn from Canada: 1) Immigration reform 2) Gun laws3) Universal healthcare

    1. awaldstein

      And more national vacation days!

      1. LE

        Disadvantage to small business.

    2. Donna Brewington White

      William, what is this new avatar?

      1. William Mougayar

        The Nice deadly rampage. It’s a rendition of the Promenade des Anglais covered in blood with the French flag colors.

        1. Donna Brewington White

          Ah, thanks William. I thought something of this nature. Especially given the footprint. That footprint is poignant.

    3. JLM

      .I reiterate my plan for the merger of the US, Canada, and Mexico.Run the new joint on the blockchain, no?Move the capital to Waco, Texas — right in the middle of things.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  4. panterosa,

    Fred, please can you share the definition of immigrant on a time scale as used in this context? I wonder how far back this goes…ie. my mother came in 1956, my paternal grandparents in 1896.

    1. fredwilson

      honestly i am not sure

      1. Sahil Patel

        @panterosa:disqus In my book, you’re an immigrant. You know what? We are *all* immigrants. Virtually everyone in this country came from somewhere else.

        1. Romeo J

          My opinion is •all• of us in the world are immigrants. I mean ***WE ALL***, seriously

      2. Sahil Patel

        @fredwilson:disqus ‘immigrants,’ like entrepreneurs, come in all forms. Immigrant is a mentality. It means hustle. Work harder than everyone else. Hold the door open for those who come after you (metaphorically). My dad came here in 1966 to come to attend RPI in Troy, NY. He taught me those three things every day. I think those qualities apply to first, second, third or seventh generation.

    2. TejDhawan

      In my book, they are immigrants. Both uprooted themselves from their homes and brought elements of their cultures here… I suspect some of those cultural elements are still alive and well in your family traditions.They may have renounced their homes but didn’t likely denounce, no matter how hard the conditions they escaped.

  5. awaldstein

    The man who sat at the head of my table growing up came from Russia as a child on his own. Never attended a day of school in his life.If they discriminated by religion, ethnicity, country of origin or education I would not be here.I’m not a romantic by nature but the Status of Liberty means something to me.

    1. James Ferguson @kWIQly

      well said – Liberty is not a romantic notion, it is a right that should be defended absolutely!

    2. LE

      There are perhaps a billion people that would love to live in this country vs. where they live now. We can’t support all of them. Or even 5% of them.If they discriminated by religion, ethnicity, country of origin or education I would not be here.That was a different place and time. Fred’s point about the tech industry clearly shows a bias toward not only education but education in a specific area.

      1. awaldstein

        Of course the time is different and everything is along with it.I believe that it all starts with intent and that drives actions.My intent is to keep immigration open as those are my roots. Certainly the solution is more complex but that is my core belief and defines in many ways my core values and who I am.

        1. JLM

          .What is really determinative is what does US law say?The administration is not following the law as it relates to both illegal entry and legal immigration.It is a rigged system.I am in favor of most immigration which results in a taxpayer.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

    3. JLM

      .Of course, he came to the US legally, no?That single word changes the nature of the discussion, as it should.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

      1. awaldstein

        He was nine years old and went through Ellis Island like everyone else–so yes!Here’s the thing (and I am not an expert).People just came at the turn of last century and arrived. Some with papers, some with none. Some speaking English most not. A mass of humanity on a boat.He only spoke yiddish so then simply used a phonetic variant of his name and that was who he became.There was damn little if any information and unless you had smallpox or some disease, you simply went ashore.Some became sweat shop workers and union organizers and passionate Americans like my Pop, some Don Correlone!

        1. JLM

          .No, actually, the initial processing was done at the departure end when the emigrant received permission from their country to leave.People came by ship and they had to pay for their passage. The shipping companies had an active role in the administration as they might be required to return them if entry was denied.Many immigrants were quarantined or denied entry.In the Potato Famine wholesale immigration, the US said, “Bring them all,” which was a departure from the then current norm.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          1. LE

            People came by ship and they had to pay for their passage. The shipping companies had an active role in the administration as they might be required to return them if entry was denied.And hence the quality of the applicants was not random. People were self selecting both by motivation as well as having a pot (or a family pot) to piss in.

  6. Tom Labus

    So well said this morning. Immigration has been used as a political weapon throughout history. Once we close down our openness, we’ll be toast. In 1960, JFK was a Vatican tool. There’s always someone new to pick on but since this is American it doesn’t work for too long

    1. JLM

      .In retrospect I have begun to really appreciate Kennedy’s role as a tax cutter. He had it figured out.Did you ever see a picture of a Kennedy in a church other than for a wedding or a funeral?JFK probably didn’t know the name of the Pope the day he was elected. His mother, Rose, sure did.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  7. Skeptik

    Is there no distinction between legal and illegal immigration? Few object to thoughtful immigration policy and recognize that immigration is a source of economic aspirants which fuels growth in the US. But it has to be bundled with incentives to stay and invest in this country rather than take the diploma and training back home. Illegal immigration is another matter entirely.

  8. Jim Kessler

    I’m all for immigration if it is done in a logical and positive way that benefits both parties, but how helpful are a collection of only positive stories without showing the negatives that need to be addressed? This is why the far left and the far right are both crazy in their own special way.Nothing gets fixed until both sides acknowledge the positives and the negatives and work together to maximize the positives while also minimizing the negatives.

  9. Brandon Burns

    There is statistical proof that automation and tech are bigger threats to jobs than immigration or globalization. The U.S. manufactures more than it ever has. However, we produce more goods using fewer people.Stat: today, we produce 3x the goods we did in 1972, with 1/3 fewer workers needed to do the work.https://www.washingtonpost….

  10. obarthelemy

    Is the main problem immigration, or integrating the underclass which most immigrants will start in ?As long as public services, in particular schools, policing, justice and health are not part of the solution but part of the problem, immigration will be a problem. Once the underlying problems are solved, it becomes an opportunity.

    1. Michael Elling

      Starts with language. Best way to disadvantage a group is not to encourage mastery, let alone basic proficiency, of the predominant socio-economic language.

  11. sigmaalgebra

    1.0 ObamaTo be more clear, Obama has been for open borders, that is, trashing our immigration laws, that is, strongly for ILLEGAL immigration, and recently for immigration of Muslims from the wars in the Mideast and South Asia. It looks like Obama is having trouble with the duty to “faithfully execute the laws” of the US. In addition he is for sanctuary cities where when illegal immigrants are convicted of serious crimes, e.g., rape, they are released to the INS that just releases them back on the streets. Also the sanctuary cities provide expensive safety net support for the illegals.Obama is also going slow on legal immigration. IIRC, the waiting line is years.Essentially all the people Obama is importing are very poorly qualified for jobs or life in the US. The Hispanics from the Rio Grande south to Patagonia are nearly all for entry level labor. The Muslims he is importing are essentially just hopeless in the US economy and a clear and present danger to the US.2.0 HillarySupposedly Hillary is for the same as Obama but for many more immigrants from the Mideast.Hillary is very angry, apparently at men and much of the US, but she doesn’t really hate the US. But as long as Obama is in office, Hillary, due to her very serious legal problems, is very much under Obama’s thumb.By the way: If Hillary became POTUS, she would also be very much under the thumb of various foreign powers who have dirt on her. In particular, there is no way Hillary could qualify for a security clearance even as high as Confidential for, say, a janitor.Yes, what the Democrat party is giving us as a candidate for US Commander in Chief:…i.e., some decades older but otherwise much like the Amherst coeds Gingrich cut down in…3.0 Paul RyanApparently Ryan’s position on immigration is close to that of Hillary.Ryan may lose his election at home and, thus, his position as Speaker of the House.4.0 Slave LaborIMHO Ryan and Hillary are looking for a new case of slave labor, that is, an identifiable, laboring underclass.So, the employer gets a profit; the rest of society picks up the costs of the safety net, social services, crime, jail terms, and extra policing, and the identifiable underclass remains so and is very slow to assimilate.Net, in the US, slavery is no bargain, is too darned expensive.5.0 TrumpTrump is against illegal immigration and for LEGAL immigration. Trump has some really, really good reasons to like LEGAL immigration a lot:…6.0 US Legal ImmigrationExcept for Obama, for the last several decades, the goals of US immigration for people we hope will become US citizens have been to admit especially well qualified people.7.0 Temporary LaborWith the H1B program and more, there has been a big push for temporary labor, often in software development.The claim has been that qualified US citizens are not available, which, of course, is a contemptible lie. Instead the point has been just to get the work done for less cost from workers who can be exploited.It is very much in the interests of nearly all US citizens who want jobs to vote to stop the H1B, etc. abuse.There may be a small role for something like H1B, but in practice it is an open door to abuse very much against the interests of US workers.Professor Norm Matloff and Senator Jeff Sessions have publicized this scam.8.0 Helping the USSince 1492, US immigration, except for slaves, has been overwhelmingly from England, France, Ireland, Germany, Italy, Poland, Russia, etc. So, we’re talking Europe — Western, Central, and Eastern.It’s worked out great! Let’s have more of the same!The people are well qualified to very highly qualified as good US citizens. Also just crucial with these people, the US melting pot works well — the people assimilate.Immigration from Asia I don’t understand at all well. More generally, I don’t understand Asian cultures.The US can look at Canada with a lot of admiration, respect, commonality, and friendship. Terrific. So, north of the US, the situation looks terrific.South of the US border, however, from the Rio Grande to Patagonia, the situation looks like nearly always a disaster. So, there is Rio de Janeiro — have Olympic water sports in an open sewer with floating dead bodies. There is Venezuela with some of the world’s richest oil resources that quite literally cannot feed its people. There is massive illegal drug activity — cocaine, heroin — that also seriously corrupts the governments. The governments appear to be nearly all corrupt, brutal dictatorships or grotesquely incompetent socialists.Somehow, Hispanic culture just fails to get it.So, to Hispanic culture, just from the track record, no thanks.For some highly qualified Hispanics, sure, make exceptions.9.0 ConclusionThe US needs to return to LEGAL immigration of HIGHLY qualified people from selected countries — mostly just Europe — where the immigrants do well fitting into the US.That’s what the US long did, including with quotas for the countries of origin.The US voters need to tell Obama, Hillary, Paul Ryan, Mark Zuckerberg, Disney, etc. to f’get about the immigration they want.Simple.

    1. Lawrence Brass

      Ah, the Patagonia. I know you just used it to brace a geographical region Dr. Sigma but I must say that you are using a stereotype that the anglo world has always so wrong, mostly because of ignorance. I know it because I live here and have the luck to have both spanish and english roots which I am very proud of but first of all I am a proud Chilean.South America is a continent of incredible cultural diversity developed from the mixture of the original hispanic conquistadores, the local native population and later european and african immigrant waves. Instead of nearly exterminating the native population and culture and reducing them to reservations as the english conquerer and their descent mostly did in North America, the natives were assimilated, evangelized. The process was violent at times too, the original conquistador soldier was not quite from the european royalty, they came from the less affluent, adventurers, some traded jail sentences to come to the new discovered continent as military labor. This assimilation and inter breeding produced the tan that a typical angloeuropean call ‘latino’ or hispanic. Ironically, this tan indicates more American blood than you or me may have. There are several original American genotypes that a south american can recognize, the foreigner usually sees only one. Each country speaks its own version of spanish, which is often heavily accented, Brazil speaks portuguese which a normal spanish speaker don’t understand. Guyanas speak english and french. Of course this is a very simplistic picture, layers of later immigration from Europe and Africa brought more into the mix. As it happened in North America, the mostly white second european immigrant wave led the development during the industrial revolution, using available cheap labor and getting privileges for themselves. Some still do. If very low wage labour is slave labor for you, comparatively we do have plenty of slave labor.Of course, if you want to make the comparison in terms of GDP well, nothing to say. I always ponder about the root causes of the different performance of anglo and hispanic cultures, never had read or heard a good analysis though. Countries as people, build a lot of their self image based on subjective observations and we may not see what others see.Back to the Patagonia, I have never ever seen rivers and lakes with water more transparent than there. Just being there makes me happy.

      1. sigmaalgebra

        Good stuff as usual.Sure, I mentioned Patagonia as an easy way to describe some geography. I felt safe including Patagonia because my impression is that nearly no one lives there and I would not be insulting anyone! Otherwise my impression of Patagonia is that it is one of best of the remaining gorgeous untouched wildernesses on the planet.At times I’ve heard good things about Argentina, e.g., great place for some huge grasslands and more good beef steak than anyone could eat. From Chile, for a while the story was excellent sea bass but, better, long surprisingly good wine.My understanding is that from the Rio Grande south to Patagonia, the natural resources are beyond belief, comparable to all of the US and maybe all of the US and Canada and maybe swamping both. Somehow there has been comparatively slow economic progress from those resources.Still, my impression of the politics is awful — brutal dictatorships or incompetent socialists.Yes, I’m also ashamed of US politics, especially as I learn more. And the economic situation now looks awful.The only explanatory story I got for south of the Rio Grande was that somehow some old Spanish view of the world, some big land owners and a lot of peasants, was still the model. There is the old story, joke, that at one time Napoleon looked at Spain, considered invading, but decided it wasn’t worth it — he didn’t want it!I know; the US very much needs to clean up its act. We made huge mistakes letting the bubble blow in the 1920s, made worse mistakes when the bubble burst in 1929, continued to make dumb dumb mistakes during the Great Depression, and pissed off Japan more than we had to.But for WWII, after Pearl Harbor, we had no choice, and we did that war very, very well.Then we got arrogant and started making mistakes: We backed France in their desire to return to Viet Nam. When the French lost, we decided that since former Paris dishwasher Ho was getting some free lunches in Moscow and Peking, the US was facing Act II of an Axis trying to take over the world so should fight Ho.Somehow Korea became a mess, but the US and UN did do well there.By 1960, the US was fooling itself on Viet Nam and on the way to disaster.Somehow the US totally pissed off some people in Iran: Mostly it was a Cold War thing; the US wanted a friend in Iran to help contain the USSR. But somehow the Shah was unpopular, and a cleric overthrew him. Since then, Iran has really hated the US.So, the US backed Saddam in Iraq to push back against Iran. Then Saddam went too far and invaded Kuwait. Bush 41 apparently wanted to show that a US guarantee of military support was solid (make up for the loss in Viet Nam), and General Schwarzkopf and others did a brilliant job pushing back Saddam.But Saddam continued not to behave, and W decided to dump him. Alas, W didn’t have a feasible alternative in mind, and the place has been at war since then. Dumb.Then the US blew a housing asset bubble, and the crash of 2008 has been handled poorly.From Viet Nam, the S&L bubble and crash, the LBO years, the bubble of 2000 and crash, the Gulf War II, Afghanistan, the bubble of 2008, crash, and slow recovery, the US is getting threadbare. A lot of US blood and treasure has been lost. We’ve got to turn around this mess.To a considerable extent, these disasters have been from the US trying to have a big heart, but our heart misled us, and we executed incompetently.Still, the drug cartels of Mexico (I know, selling into the US), Venezuela, very rich in oil, not being able to feed its people, the mess in Rio, etc. look even worse than the US.Often Canada has done better: Stayed out of Viet Nam. Makes some socialism work without big disasters. Avoids the urban crime of Chicago, Detroit, Newark, etc. Avoided the 2008 housing bubble.Maybe Trump will, in addition to the specific topics he has been pushing, more generally get the US back to some good level of self discipline and competence. About time. If the US can clean up its act, maybe that will also significantly help south of the Rio Grande.

  12. pointsnfigures

    Gary Becker has the best solution. Charge for it.

  13. andyswan

    I am very supportive of legal immigration. It brings innovation, intelligence, ambition and enthusiasm for the American opportunity.I abhor illegal immigration. It brings crime, dependency, and cultural degradation.Where do I fall in your false dichotomy?

    1. pointsnfigures


    2. Rob Larson

      I believe the point Fred is making is that legal immigration needs to be expanded. The legal immigration avenue is currently allowing only a trickle through. It needs to be widened to allow a torrent of immigrants.Some people who say “I only support legal immigration” are also against tripling, quadrupling, 10x-ing the # of people who are allowed to come in through that avenue. So what they’re really saying is “I’m against having very many immigrants.”

      1. andyswan

        Until you stop the flood coming in from the toilet, I’m not real interested in a conversation about turning up the faucet.

        1. Rob Larson

          Surely you can see that the two are related? Every immigrant would rather be a legal immigrant than an illegal one. But when they are told “the line for getting in by legal means is 10 years long and your chance of ever making it through that channel is 0%” then people who are desperate to make a better life for their families look for other ways in. (I’m not talking about the narcos and criminals – they would find ways in regardless – I’m talking about the majority of illegal immigrants)If the legal channel was opened up to the point that people across the border had realistic hope to enter in by that avenue, the demand for coyotes to sneak people across the border would plummet.You are focused on the supply side of illegal immigration, which is fine – but the demand side shouldn’t be ignored.

          1. andyswan

            Good point.Bottom line– open immigration and a welfare state cannot coexist. Choose one.

          2. JLM

            .The demand side is predatory. It is individuals and employers wanting to pay low wages.I am building a small rock wall and I am paying the exact same wage for rock masons I used to pay 25 years ago.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

        2. Jess Bachman

          From 2009 to 2014 there was a net LOSS of 140,000 Mexicans who LEFT the US for Mexico.The wall will only keep them in!

          1. andyswan

            Right on. Self-deportation via removal of reward was mocked when Romney brought it up, but of course he is right.

          2. sigmaalgebra

            One word: eVerify.

          3. JLM

            .Turn it over to McDonald’s. I swipe my card and in less than 2 seconds I get my receipt. Let those guys run the show.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          4. LE

            What are you doing eating at shitty food at McDonalds?

          5. Richard

            i like how people bash McDonald’s yet give Stsrbucks et al a free pass.

          6. LE

            That’s actually a good point. I just get a mocha drink at Starbucks and a tall one at that and I only drink 1/3 of it to boot. I am not a big waddling turd, or the type of overweight person who gets a venti loaded with sugar and fat. I don’t eat shit food. I guess JLM could be getting coffee at McDonalds but to me the who experience of even going in is depressing just by the average clientele and the fluorescent lighting <— Really.

          7. JLM


          8. sigmaalgebra

            Good French fries are good. Can you find better ones than McDonald’s? If I get up early for a meeting and skip breakfast, then after the meeting I might head to McD’s for pancakes and OJ — it’s good. For a fast dinner, a 1/3 pound hamburger with vegies is good. It’s not easy to run a fast food place, or thousands of them, better than McD’s.

          9. sigmaalgebra

            It’s a riot!

          10. JLM

            .You are correct. The decline, including countries other than just Mexico, is as shown. These numbers are very hard to put a finger on and many reputable prognosticators suggest it might be more than 20MM illegals in the US.Self-deportation works?JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

        3. LE

          I am going to create 10 disqus accounts just to upvote that some more.

    3. JaredMermey

      Hardly think it is so black and white.

    4. jason wright

      On your sword to make way for your infinitely more talented wealth creating replacement from overseas.

      1. andyswan

        I’d rather work with her.

        1. jason wright

          For her if you’re not careful

    5. Jess Bachman

      Undocumented immigrants commit violent crime at much lower rates than the native population. There was a time in my life where I was an undocumented immigrant and you better believe I drove the speed limit and was careful not to cross paths with the law for any reason.

      1. andyswan

        Simply not true. Sounds good, but not true at all.  Easily 3-5x the violent crime rate of the general population, and even worse when compared to legal immigrants.

        1. Jess Bachman

          psst… your sources are showing.

          1. andyswan

            Post yours then. You made the original claim.

          2. Jess Bachman

            Well there is no shortage of liberal and left wing sources and think-tanks I could use to refute your Foxnews source…But here is one from that Koch brothers funded libertarian Cato Institute for you…

          3. andyswan

            That’s talking about immigrants, not illegal immigrants.

          4. Jess Bachman

            It’s actually talking about all immigrants, regardless of legal status or not, however read further down and that is addressed as well.

          5. andyswan

            Legal immigrants are certainly less prone to criminal activity. By contrast, their first action with respect to our country is a legal one. I think it’s telling that the FBI can’t/won’t give us data on the % of violent criminals who are not citizens.

        2. LE

          Note also that Jess talked about traffic laws and petty crime. Meaning fly under the radar. Perhaps a good marker for someone who is here illegally. Drives at the speed limit or less.

        3. creative group

          andyswan:your source Fox news? Can you provide impartial or unbiased source that is really fair and balanced? That is similar to someone posting their source of MSNBC.Did you do that for entertainment factor?

          1. andyswan

            If you have sources that refute the stats the author gathered from state and local jails, I’d like to see them. Unfortunately, the federal government doesn’t see a reason to track these statistics….

          2. creative group

            andyswan:we have used Fox news as a source for a report of an event but know that anysource we use that supports factual positions we refrain from using Ultra Right or Ultra Left leaning anything. That is just our Independent views.We realize that when any information from partisan sources are used there willbe built in biases. We never would expect anything from AIPAC reporting anythingpositive on the PA or visa versa. Anything from the CATO Institute reporting anything in favor of Bookings Institute, etc. So because those who favor or watch Fox News commentators (There maybe a few real Journalist on the entire channel and same for MSNBC)Based upon the thoughts of Contributors on this blog there appears to be few that differentiate a commentator from a Journalist. Many talking points presented on this blog are talking points from commentators and not even realizing how they have been feed that information. The birther movement still believes a lie created in the back room. (Trump)andyswan we are not saying that any applies to you.

          3. JLM

            .That article is extraordinarily well documented and sourced using such well springs as ICE for its facts.You betray your own knee jerk bias in your comment.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          4. creative group

            JLM:anything Ultra Right or Ultra left we are biased against. One of the many reasons this political system is flawed and ripe in picking Kings and Queens. We didn’t even require jerking our knee. Just enjoyed the Independent bending.Proud to be an Independent. Unapologetically Independent.

      2. DJL

        Undocumented immigrants are by definition committing a crime. Not sure why we have to make one type of crime better or worse than others.

        1. Jess Bachman

          Not sure why we have to make one type of crime better or worse than others. ¯_(ツ)_/¯

        2. Eduardo Ramirez

          Some crimes ARE better or worse than others. I’ve gone through the odd red light that I could have sworn was still yellow. I also downloaded music I had no right to in college. But I’ve never assaulted anyone or stolen a car, nor would I associate with anyone who would do such a thing.The laws that are typically broken by undocumented workers are overstaying visas (a civil violations on par with a red light camera ticket) and illegal entry (a crime punishable by a fine and up to six months in jail, much like shoplifting or possesion of marijuana).…These aren’t really the types of crime I tend to get worked up over, personally.

          1. LE

            But I’ve never assaulted anyone or stolen a car, nor would I associate with anyone who would do such a thing.Well although I never tried any drugs (meaning not even pot) if you have you have contributed greatly to crime. My point is that there are crimes that create other crimes.Running a red light and/or speeding has almost no impact other than at that particular moment in time. The minute you stop doing it it doesn’t matter that you did it before. [1][1] I can come up with a few impacts for this though. Police presence and money wasted. Encouragement of others to do the same. However it’s low on the totem pole, assuming of course you don’t create a traffic accident.

          2. JLM

            .Entering Mexico illegally will get you 5 years in prison.An illegal wants your job and will do it for less than they pay you.Some illegals will camp on the social safety net and if they have children they will be a cost to the local school district.Everything is connected. Nothing is simple. We are a nation of laws, not men.I agree completely with your sentiment when I know that individual but 12MM is a little different perspective.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          3. DJL

            I completely get it. I just thought it was interesting (ironic) to use a group of people who have, by definition, committed a crime, as a reference to argue that these people commit less crime.

        3. creative group

          DJL:Will be sure to direct the serial killer’s, mass murderer’s and serial racist’s we meant rapists your way. (Statistics based upon those arrested say the profiled of the aforementioned look more like you).

          1. JLM

            .You mean other than Kate Steinle, no?JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          2. creative group

            JLM:We first will openly give our condolences to the family of Kate Steinle. One incident is one too many.The highlighting Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez as a norm of illegal immigrants is erroneous and you knew it before even posting it . The citing of one case is the typical Republican response to an overall unrefuted statistical listing of the majority of people being classified as serial anything in the United States come from one ethnic group.You misread or didn’t understand the response to all crime is the same.

          3. DJL

            Not sure what that has to do with immigration. But whatever works for you! (I guess I am being racially profiled.)

          4. creative group

            DJL:The profiling wasn’t intentional nor meant to be disparaging. We just looked at the ethnicity of what the FBI listed in their profiles of serial killers and serial rapist in this country. The ethnic group are white males. You didn’t look like any of them. Just saying they are white males born and breed in the United States. No disrespect intended. We are proud Independents and realize the two party system is designed to favorboth parties which encourage political gridlock.

      3. LE

        Here was a time in my life where I was an undocumented immigrant and you better believe I drove the speed limit and was careful not to cross paths with the law for any reason.Fascinating. And confirms what I always thought.Undocumented immigrants commit violent crime at much lower ratesWell perhaps violent crime but certainly an increase in crime (as defined by breaking laws) as a result of operating in a cash economy of under the table transactions.

        1. Jess Bachman

          My experience with operating in a cash economy of under the table transactions have exclusively been in the restaurant industry for a few years where all my bosses have been white American dudes who paid their workers in cash AND skimmed cash off the top to avoid paying taxes. Maybe immigrants do that too, I dunno.FYI, undocumented immigrants pay INTO social security about $13 billion a year and only get $1 billion back. Just imagine how insolvent it would be without them. Yikes!

          1. JLM

            .The numbers as to who pays in and who receives benefits are always as you show.One pays in for their entire working life and then receives benefits until they die.There is nothing remarkable about that observation.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          2. Jess Bachman

            I’m pretty sure the numbers for SS are not 13:1 for most people. The undocumented are paying in on fake or expired SS numbers. Around $100 billion over the past decade according to SSA chief actuary. That’s a pretty a pretty sweet profit margin for the government no matter how you look at it.

          3. JLM

            .I paid in for 52 years and just now qualified for Medicare. There is nothing remarkable about that.I am skeptical that the SS Administration can actually obtain those numbers. Most SS fraud is indeterminate by race.They can probably do a hatchet job on ethnicity but legal v illegal seems a stretch.Remember also the employer pays a full match on SS.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          4. F. Jovan Jester

            What I saw a lot of in the US was people “borrowing” social security numbers or using fake numbers, hence they were paying all the various payroll taxes not just social security.

    6. kidmercury

      oh snap! as a child of immigrants and a family of immigrants, i can tell you that the majority of my oversized family absolutely detests illegal immigration. no legal immigrant who had to work for it and play by the rules looks at rules against illegal immigration as some sort of xenophobic atrocity. rather it’s a sign of civility, about the same as standing in line to go to the bathroom rather than just barging in front of everyone else.

    7. LE

      false dichotomyEqually bothersome is the assumption by many people that if you are here as the child of an immigrant (or are an immigrant yourself) you must necessary support immigration reforms.

    8. aminTorres

      Andy, even the legal framework of immigration has issues that need to be solved.When I came to America, some of my friends came with a different visa that required them to go back to the dom. rep.They left, because they fallowed the law but they took with them great talent, and a very expensive education that is being used well there but could have also benefitted us here.I pay a ton of taxes, happy to do it, they could have paid taxes here too, they could have contributed to the economy here if they were legally allowed to stay… This is just an example of how even when all parties follow the law, it doesn’t necessarily benefit our economy here.So reform should look at both, not just the ilegal part.

      1. andyswan

        Could not agree more.

    9. F. Jovan Jester

      Speaking of false dichotomies, what you mention is quite remarkable. It is incredible that illegal immigrants are lifetime law-breakers, committing a string of never-ending crimes starting with the first one of entering the country illegally, while legal immigrants are model citizens throughout their lives, incapable of thinking an immoral thought, never mind committing a crime.

  14. TejDhawan for lending your voice, here is our message from Des Moineshttp://www.desmoinesregiste…

  15. jason wright

    New York State – 23%.London – 50% of its residents were born outside the UK. Fifty percent, half, 1 in 2. Ridiculous.

  16. DJL

    Like many others below, I think we do a terrible disservice to this entire issue if we do not use the word “Legal” immigration. There is a huge difference. I would suggest, Fred, that you update your messaging here and not fall into the trap.The American left and Media has hijacked this issue (like so many others) and made it so that any opposition to “illegal” immigration is considered racist and bigoted. This is precisely how to you kill intelligent debate on any subject. You demonize one side.”Legal” immigration is key to the future of our country. We live in a suburb of Houston that is 80% Indian and Asian. That is the demographic future that my children will likely see as the move out and compete in the world. The amount of hardworking, devoted talent coming from these countries is striking. But they ALL followed the legal immigration process.

  17. falicon

    I believe we are *slowly* moving towards a future with no borders anyway (one, global, economy)…so the jobs and the knowledge are going to go wherever the true talent is (and at rates that the global market determines).America is not going to be the only great place to live before too long…and the more elitist, difficult, and walled off we become with the world and the global economy, the less and less people will want (or need) to come here…ultimately who does that hurt but ourselves?!

    1. Cam MacRae

      America isn’t the only great place to live *today*, let alone before too long.

      1. falicon


  18. LE

    The tech sector is pro-immigration because it benefits from immigration and because it was created, at least in part, by immigrants. Unlike some sectors of our society, tech has not forgotten where it came from.We can just boil that down to “tech sector benefits from certain types of immigration” and pretty much forget the “has not forgotten where it came from”. The negative impact ion certain existing people in this country is important to consider. And the tech industry has a need now and if these jobs are filled by immigrants it will drive down wages in those areas and lessen opportunities for people who are already here (or drive them into lesser occupations).

    1. Richard

      I would argue that the problem today is foreign investment into the us in the form of fording housing ownership. It may seem to be a welcome boost to the economy. But a very disturbing second thought comes to mind — rapid depletion of affordable housing for middle-class Americans. There is nothing that makes a salary so uninviting than knowing you can’t afford a house in close proximity to it. What is the argument for foreign investment in US housing when we have a housing problem in the US?

  19. JLM

    .There is a breathtaking naivete and shallowness of thought when anyone attempts to conflate the distinctly different issues of ILLEGAL entry into our country and LEGAL immigration.First, let’s be clear — those who enter our country without permission are not “immigrants,” they are criminals. Try to go to Mexico without papers and tell me how that works out. You will, of course, be telling THAT story from a Mexican prison and will have five years in which to tell it.The Obama administration is simply no longer enforcing any of the country’s immigration laws. They have created an open border to the south and are encouraging illegal entry with their policies. Encouraging, not permitting, encouraging.Cities in the US — my hometown ATX, Austin by God Texas — have unilaterally designated themselves as lawless zones by declaring themselves “sanctuary cities” whereby they refuse to follow the country’s laws.What does this mean?It means when a criminal is apprehended in Austin and his case is fully adjudicated instead of turning them over to ICE for deportation back to their country of origin — which is Federal law — they turn him loose into the population.Worse, when a criminal is charged and is given a court date, they do the exact same thing.In the past, when an illegal was apprehended and received a court date, they were turned over to the Feds who immediately deported them.When a border jumper is apprehended in the Rio Grande Valley, he is given a court date six months in the future (usually in San Antone in Central Texas rather than along the border) and never shows up for the hearing.Huh? Wow, didn’t see that coming.As to crime, let me tell you you have no idea. The gov’t is releasing known criminals — convicted of murder in Mexico, convicted of murder in the US, charged with felonies in the US — into our country. I can take you to the street corners in El Paso, San Antonio, Corpus Christi where these men get off buses and are turned loose to prey upon my state.The system is not BROKEN — it is being ignored and circumvented and existing laws are not being enforced. Frankly, it is an impeachable offense and the President and the head of DHS, Jeh Johnson, should both be impeached.Let me tell you where this leads — the violent gang MS 13 (read up on these guys) bought an apartment complex in northeast Austin and set up shop until the Feds finally swooped down and arrested all of them. Now, that is pretty damn brazen.The motivation behind this wholesale flaunting of the law is politics — the desire on the part of the Democrats to create a beholden voting class. California is allowing people who have a driver’s license (which one can obtain with no documentation) to be simultaneously registered to vote.This wholesale crusade to create an open border is working. It is working well and the results of it — in Texas — are obvious, apparent, and accelerating.A small point — when a wave of illegals come across the border it has a huge impact on the social safety net and the schools. A school district must educate a slew of children who have no English and who must be paid for by the taxpayers of that county (independent school district).This aspect of criminal activity is maddening and the rest of the country has no idea how desperate the situation has become.Build the wall? Hell, I’m an engineer and I used to know how to finish concrete, I wonder if I can volunteer?JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

    1. sigmaalgebra

      Now:1. Just what are the motivations that Obama has for doing this?2. Just what are the motivations of the media to refuse to report this?3. Just what are the motivations of the Congress not to pursue impeachment?I don’t get it.

  20. Ana Milicevic

    We think of immigration as a one-way concept and certainly legislate it that way (American ex-pats in particular get the short end of this stick): for the most talented, capable and globally-oriented people it isn’t that way anymore. Where up to a decade ago the US or UK were a clear choice for those of us born in countries with more restrictive passports, today there are many options and it boils down to your personal understanding of what types of services a state should provide, balanced with quality of living. I mentor young technologists from South-East Europe; as much as we all agree we like New York and London, they’re increasingly asking and I’m increasingly pointing them in the directions of Toronto, Barcelona, Berlin, Chiang Mai, and Dar es Salaam. I realize that if I were making the same decision today vs almost two decades ago, I likely wouldn’t choose New York or London either.This article is very reflective of how I think about immigration today — the concept of Nation as a Service; given our regular conversations here I think it’ll resonate with many of you as well:

  21. JLM

    .Know this about Mexican illegals — everybody in Texas loves them.Hell, they invented breakfast tacos and TexMex. They raise our children (Delia, Myriam, Angela, Arellia), they clean our houses, they cut our grass, they wash our cars, they feed us, they wash our clothes.We prey upon them because they are illegally in the country.We under pay them. We provide no benefits. We expect them to work when we want them to work. We take advantage of them.And, still, they come because even this is a better prospect for their children. They love their children.I once bought a business which competed against another one which employed illegal labor. I paid my folks twice the then current minimum wage and provided comprehensive health benefits. The exact same health benefit I gave to mois. Exact same.I bought it three weeks before 9-11. Worst. Timing. Ever. I unloaded it ten years later for slightly less than I paid for it and absorbed losses during that decade. My decision to pay better wages and benefits wrecked the company but I could sleep at night and that was, at the time, more important.I never reported my competitor though I was tempted. One day, under the influence of a couple of very cold beers, I shared with him my thoughts on his business practices. Thereafter, I never received another Christmas card from the guy.The people who worked at my company — very hard, outdoor, summer work and I made my son work there one summer with the proviso he was to get the hardest, hottest, longest jobs and to this day he thanks me for the experience and the men loved him and used to laugh at me when they knew he was my son — were the salt of the earth.Mexicans are Catholic, family persons, incredibly hard working, joyous, and fun. I want to be a Mexican (or a breakfast taco) in my next life. The only thing one might find fault with is they can be a little messy.Still, this is not how it should be and we all know it.One thought — the Dems better be careful what they do with this issue as the Mexican, entrepreneurial, pickup contractor frame of mind is way more Republican than Dem. The most ethnically racist folks in Texas are third generation Mexicans with college degrees.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

    1. Richard

      Anyone who lives in the southwest knows that we owe a debt of gratitude to the Mexican people. (Not to mention the effects that the us demand for illegal drugs has had on their country). Our goal should be to curb the our people’s demands for illegal drugs and help make Mexico safe and a welcome location for American investment.

    2. LE

      One day, under the influence of a couple of very cold beers, I shared with him my thoughts on his business practices.Sometimes the idea with this is to prevent yourself from doing what you said you didn’t do. “Turn him in”. By telling him your discontent, you effectively blocked that action which, despite the liquor, may have been your intention in doing so.My decision to pay better wages and benefits wrecked the company but I could sleep at night and that was, at the time, more important.Well were you sleeping better at night primarily as a result of knowing that you weren’t breaking the law? I think people will read what you say as you doing so because of “doing the right thing” when that might not have been the case. I speak from my own experience which I don’t try to cloak in anything but typically acting in my own self interest.I once bought a business which competed against another one which employed illegal labor. I paid my folks twice the then current minimum wage and provided comprehensive health benefits. The exact same health benefit I gave to mois. Exact same….I unloaded it ten years later for slightly less than I paid for it and absorbed losses during that decade. My decision to pay better wages and benefits wrecked the companyWell this is the reason for my oft repeated saying “you can only be as honest as the competition”.

      1. JLM

        .As a kid I worked in construction. I loved it. But I worked like a rented mule. It was a great experience.I spent a summer raising manholes where they’d paved the road and the manholes had to be raised by four inches.I had to cut them out in the new asphalt, jack hammer out the concrete around them, bust them free from the concrete shaft, lay bricks (mix the mortar by hand) on top to bring it to the right elevation, re-install it, place concrete to the right elevation.I had to do two per day and had one helper.This was in the middle of a street with the cars whizzing by. I parked the truck to protect me from one direction and put the air compressor on the other side. Still, some jackass hit the truck one day.I worked in boots and jeans shorts in the hot sun. My boots and socks would be full of sweat at the end of the day. At the end of the summer, I was burnt to a crisp and so brown as to look like I was from the Equator. Every hair on my exposed body was bleached bright golden.I returned to school in such great shape it was amazing.I remember that summer and I respect the dignity of work. I find myself constantly multiplying the hourly rate of a worker by 2080 hours per year and when I don’t like the number, I pay them what I think is dignified and which respects the work.I once had a person apply for a job and they said, “I’m looking to make $24,000.”I said, “That’s not acceptable.””OK, would you be willing to pay $20,000?””No,” I said, “but I would be willing to pay $40,000.”One of the best hires I ever made. I believe in the dignity of work and that an employer owns their employee’s problems and I remember that hot summer raising manholes and what it taught me about the dignity of work. [And, of course, how to raise a manhole which most people know nothing about.]JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

        1. LE

          “No,” I said, “but I would be willing to pay $40,000.”This “person”. Was she female And very attractive?But I remember once visiting a furniture business for sale. [1] The owner had this hispanic girl on the payroll and he couldn’t describe what she did. Then he says “she doesn’t really work anymore but I still pay her. I try to help her out.Afterwords the guy who brought me there said “she’s probably blowin him”. Just like that. (For any women reading this is crude but I am just repeating exactly what was said to me, complete with “blowin” not “blowing”).[1] Note: Wasn’t Nebraska Furniture Mart.

          1. JLM

            .No, he was a skinny kid who did video and social media. He caught my eye because he sent a video resume in response to a job posting at the University of Texas Radio/Film/Television school.He produced more than 600 pieces of original video content in less than a year. The going rate for such things was about $1000/each at the time.Truly brilliant kid.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

        2. sigmaalgebra

          I mowed grass, trimmed box hedges (at least they were nice boxes when I was done), and weeded flower beds. One day after I mowed some grass, I learned that the temperature had been 104 F. The woman of the house where I did that was good enough, half way through, to give me a 1/2 gallon Mason jar full of ice water. I drank it quickly, refilled it from the garden hose, drank that quickly, and continued mowing! A gallon!Those three work items I did because Dad had taught me how. His technique, and, thus, mine, for weeding flower beds was poor. But for box hedges his teaching was terrific: I brought posts, a hammer, and chalk line and cut to the line, not to hedge density.There was a market for much more, but I didn’t know how to handle either the work or the marketing.One day the hedge was about 8 feet high, and I was to cut it back to about five feet. It was next to a back fence along the property line, maybe 80 feet long. I brought a step ladder and my usual chalk line. I had a Godzilla pair of Sears hedge shears — with great notches for cutting the stalks. So, I was in work shoes, long jeans, a hat, but no shirt. Here the woman of the house didn’t volunteer ice water. But there were two girls — about 13 each while I was 15. Somehow the girls really, really wanted to set up a card table and chairs, in the shade of the house, maybe 50 feet from me, and watch. They didn’t say anything and wouldn’t even make eye contact; it was darned hot out, maybe 90+ F; it was air conditioned for them inside; but somehow, still, they were determined to sit outside and watch me. They got jollies from some aspect of watching my work, but I have no idea what.

          1. JLM

            .Good story.Well played.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          2. pointsnfigures

            Worked home construction during the day. Busted concrete with a sledgehammer and hand dug some foundations. Then, I sold shoes at night.

        3. Rob Larson

          JLM: great story about the manholes.For me, it was working on my grandpa’s cattle ranches, every summer from age 10 till I was finishing college – out in the middle of nowhere in the hot Chihuahuan desert.Building barbed wire fences, digging 3-ft deep post holes through hard-baked clay and rock, using Chisel & Point crowbars. (most underrated tool ever for standing up a fence)Cutting, raking, and baling hay. Then bringing in and stacking the hay bales 20 feet tall under a (very hot) barn roof.Then disking (plowing) the field again, bringing to the surface tens of thousands of football sized rocks (this was not great farming country), spending the next two weeks picking up and moving all the rocks out, then replanting the hay.Flanking (throwing and holding down) 300-pound Braford calves during branding – working vigilantly to keep them from either getting up or kicking the crap out of you (not always successfully).Fighting range fires that would start up from lightning during drought years. You swing a 4-ft by 1-ft strip of rubber (cut from a truck tire inner-tube) down on the burning brush. If you’re by yourself the fire comes back before you can hit it a second time, but 2 people working together can hit it fast enough to put the fire out, slowly working down a burn line. (until the wind shifts and reverses all the progress you made while you run for safety). Once I remember fighting a fire for 72 hours straight, sleeping only ~3 hours total.The best days were spent horseback, checking on the cattle or bringing in a herd. Those days were treasured but few.Never received a paycheck. One time someone asked my grandpa why didn’t he pay his grandsons. He thought about it and said, “Hell, they should be paying me, for the experience!” Truer words never spoken.When my uncle/grandpa would send me and my cousins to the far end of the ranch to get a tractor, start a pump, fix a gate, whatever – we always found unexpected problems when we got there. With literally no one around to ask for advice, you learned at a young age to problem solve and figure out a way to get the job done.Like you, I returned home at the end of each summer with a tan as dark as the Mexicans I’d been working with. Some of my best memories ever.

          1. JLM

            .There is no harder work than baling hay. Great, great story.Ever notice there are no fat people on ranches?Well played.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          2. Rob Larson

            Ha, so true. Something about agriculture – the hard work becomes not just what you do, but a core part of your identity and pride. My grandpa was riding and roping through his mid 80’s. Never retired – worked till a brain tumor took him just before his 90th birthday. My other grandpa (also a rancher) finally sold his ranch and “retired” but has never stopped working with his hands and lifting heavy things, though he’s about to turn 90 himself. Strong. Up until not that many years ago he could have beaten me arm wrestling.Another thing about cowboys / ranchers: amazing pain tolerance. My grandpa stopped going into town to have a doctor cut out the small skin cancer spots on his forearms when he realized he could save time by burning them off with a soldering iron. Then he thought of using his soldering iron to burn off a bump on the inside of his cheek that he kept accidentally biting. His comment afterwards: “Best idea ever – I wish I’d thought of it years ago!”My dentist once told about a bullrider that came through town needing some extensive work done on a tooth. On his way to the next rodeo, in a hurry to get on the road. “How much time will this take, doc?” “Well, it’ll be a couple hours. This isn’t a simple procedure.” “What if you skipped the pain shot?” “Well, that would save about a half hour… but that would *really* hurt.” “Go ahead, doc.” He opened his mouth and sat perfectly still and silent, never moving a muscle while my dentist incredulously performed the work and sent him on his way.

          3. JLM

            .Every person whoever eats a hamburger should be forced to do a day’s work on a ranch. The ranch work ethic is what made America great and it is the last truly undiluted part of the American independent spirit left in the country.I had something to do with clearing out all the shin oak, cedar, and trash trees on a 5,000 acre ranch. All the springs returned and the grass was stronger than an acre of garlic. Tx A&M tested it.Unbelievable turkeys and deer.I had nothing to do with the actual ranching but I did get a lot of saddle time posing on a horse and pretending to push some cattle out of the brush. [Truth be known, they would likely have come out when they got thirsty by themselves.]I rehabbed a building built by George W Littlefield of the LIT (Paint Ranch and the Yellow House north of the Canadian River) in North Texas and the founder of the city of Littlefield. He was a rancher who came back from the Civil War and ran the first few herds up the Chisholm Trail.He made a fortune or two and engaged in arbitrage wherein he would sell his herd in Abilene, Kansas and ride back down the trail offering to buy herds. He, obviously, knew the price cattle were going for at the railhead.Cattle were selling for $4/head in Tx and sometimes as much as $25/hd in Abilene. Of course, you had to get through the Indian Territory and a lot of other things.It was a great gig until the advent of barbed wire which changed the game. He was a great benefactor of the Univ of Texas and a banker. I have some of his original correspondence and it is hoot.There is nobody like a rancher. Tough. As. Hell.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          4. cavepainting

            Great story, Loved the way you told it.

          5. Rob Larson

            Thanks! Great memories. Now I’m wondering how to re-create that experience for my own kids. (not sure it’s entirely possible)

    3. F. Jovan Jester

      As long as business owners keep employing illegal immigrants, they will keep entering the US. If the US was serious about solving the illegal immigration “problem”, enforcement and penalties against employers would be stricter and harsher.Another thing overlooked by those who fear and resent illegal immigrants in the US is that most gain employment by using borrowed Social Security numbers, hence they are in fact paying taxes when the various payroll taxes are withheld from their paychecks.

      1. JLM

        .Employers who violate the law should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. The gov’t is not enforcing those laws either.Possessing a fraudulent SS card is a crime. Using it is another crime.Illegal aliens can use the EITC (earned income tax credit) to obtain a check. It is a scam. The net is a cost to the Treasury not a benefit.The net of enforcement to the US gov’t and, thereby, the US taxpayer is an incredible amount of money.We have 50,000 homeless veterans — let’s take care of them first. After all, they’re citizens and they served the country. Why not?I say, “Treat our veterans like Syrian refugees. Give them housing, money, education, privileges, and food stamps. Yeah!”Sorry, I’m a veteran and I was reading something.Back to our normal programming.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

    4. Lawrence Brass

      “We under pay them. We provide no benefits. We expect them to work when we want them to work. We take advantage of them.”There are those meetings when no one got there with the things they said in the last meeting they will have, or where everything is ego, an “ego-meeting” I call those or when nothing is decided or directed. I hate meetings when they don’t produce anything valuable. But you have to be there, and the reason is that being there will give you the chance to hear and appreciate those uncommon events when a person say something really relevant and important, usually a ‘root cause’, a piece of evidence or information that will give you a real chance to understand a problem. That is why going to meetings and hearing is important.And this sentence of yours remind me of such events. Plus, plus, plus my friend.

      1. JLM

        .So my current house person works on Thursdays. With the empty nest, I am not personally all that messy and I have a lot of khaki shorts. I can go a couple of months without having to do the laundry plus I can use paper plates if pressed hard.The 4th of July was on a Monday. She asks, “I get paid for the holiday, no?”Do I pay her?Yes, I do. Not because it was a holiday but because I respect that level of canniness. She asks me because I am the predictable soft one.Last year, she got paid for the week of her vacation.In the rounding error of life, it means nothing and everything.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

        1. Lawrence Brass

          Nice. Nothing pays off better in life more than being decent, a concept which is quite abstract for some people or which, as I like to say, varies from town to town. ROI karma points.While there are incentives for immigration illegal or not, such as US citizens willing to pay people for their work, the flow won’t stop until demand is satisfied, simple Friedman economics in my opinion. If you want to stop it, it is demand what should be tackled first. One day jail for everyone paying for jobs done by illegal immigrants. “Señor Jeff, the police is outside.. they want to talk with you”. Maybe that is what will happen in President Trump’s parallel universe.

    5. cavepainting

      This is really not an either OR debate. The problem with the Trump campaign is that they have taken extreme positions that do not reflect a problem solving mindset, but an attitude of pandering and fear mongering. You can be AGAINST new illegal migration but FOR resolving the situations of current illegal immigrants already in the country with dignity, and FOR creating new mechanisms and processes to meet the demand that exists for STEM jobs and low-end jobs.Illegal immigration is no worse now than before; neither are they the primary troublemakers in the society, measured as crime committed per capita. But, it is a problem nevertheless that needs to be solved. Not just by being tough, but also with heart and by being innovative and cognizant of the demand that exists that cannot be met locally.

      1. JLM

        .You should come down to Texas and let me show you the reality of the situation, Cave Painter. This is a war.Forget Trump — focus on the problem. The problem is real.The issues are:1. What do we do with 12-20MM illegals in our country? Are we prepared to give up on the impact of these low skill, low wage expectation workers? If so, who is going to tell the American tool pushers their jobs are screwed?That, BTW, is what drove the 2014 election results wherein the Republicans were given a Christmas gift of the Senate, a bigger House majority, and countless Governor’s mansions and statehouses.2. What are we going to do about legal immigration? One problem of which is the use of H-1B visas to supplant American workers — see my comments about Southern Cal Edison and its replacement of 500 tech folk.The Senate is considering raising the 65K limit to 195K (S153). This is treason to the American tech worker.3. What are we going to do about the security of our borders which impacts immigration, crime, drugs, terror?4. What are we going to do about ISIS using refugees to infiltrate our society — something the Caliph, the Dir FBI and the DNI all say is happening right now. The FBI admits to 1000 ISIS investigations penetrating every state in the US.On this score, Trump is the only person (going back to the primary free for all) who has brought this to the fore. He owns the space between the ears of the left, the right, the MSM, the pundits, and the White House on this issue.This is a fire that cannot be put out by pouring gasoline on it.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

        1. cavepainting

          Hi, I agree. I am just saying that the problem has to be solved through pragmatic and practical policies without making people fearful or taking extreme positions.1. How many of these 12-20M illegals do jobs that American citizens will not do ? How many of them have criminal records ? How many of these are men vs. women and children ? How many have run away from violence and exploitation ? There has to be a medium between saying “we will deport them all” to “we will put them all on a path to citizenship”.2. I am with you on this. But there has to a way to address short term demand and may be we allow for short term increases that need to be approved every year and it gets reset annually to 65 K.3. Yes, and the wall is one of many approaches. It is a viable option if it is positioned as one of many ways to stop illegal immigration without accompanied by all the hoopla. Its cost and effectiveness vs. other options need to be understood.4. Yes, it is a serious issue. But, let me ask you a question. Canada has taken tens of thousands of Syrian refugees compared to US. Why are we not seeing ISIS violence there ? What percentage of the ISIS folks who have infiltrated the country are from refugees vs. citizens of US and Europe who have been radicalized through the internet ? The solutions being proposed have to be grounded in actual data. We cannot pursue the easiest or the harshest approaches that may create the most noise, but end up being the least effective.

          1. JLM

            .The meme that illegals are doing jobs Americans will not do is really not the case. Go to a construction site and you will see illegals and Americans working side by side.One of the things we can do immediately is to stop allowing criminals to stay in the country. That is a very simple law enforcement problem to solve.We also have to stop this sanctuary city nonsense. No city gets to decide which Federal laws they are going to enforce.The issue is with a robust supply of labor, wages are stagnated below even the low wages that low skill illegal workers are willing to accept.There are more than enough STEM grads in the US to meet the demand. I applaud a bit of labor scarcity in order to drive wages up.Securing the borders is not just building a wall. It includes stepped up surveillance, apprehension, deportation at the border, and better supervision of entry visas which illegals simply overstay.The wall is part of the solution but it is a very important element both structurally and psychologically.The issue of Syrian refugees and ISIS is a classic — the bad guys have to be right one time and the good guys have to be right every time.Not to quibble but the Canadian effort focuses on private sector sponsorship, NGO involvement, financial support in the region (giving money to solve the problem in the region and not allowing refugees to be transported to other continents), and it is in its infancy.Even so, they are focused on a total of 25,000 while the US has already taken way more than that.The issue of self-radicalization is not a refugee issue. The San Bernandino murderers were in the country legally, gave off signs of radicalization, and the woman should, likely, never have been admitted. It was a failure of vetting.The Boston bombers traveled to dangerous parts of the world, the FBI knew it, and we did nothing.A lot of this requires us getting up on our game.There is no silver bullet available to make these many problems disappear.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

        2. cavepainting

          Hi, wondering what you make of the Donald’s last few days ? Do you think he can avoid getting in his own way ? And do you believe he will drop out if he sees the writing on the wall ? Or do you think he is a fighter who will find a way to punch through it all and go to the finish line, be it first or second ?

    6. CJ

      “We under pay them. We provide no benefits. We expect them to work when we want them to work. We take advantage of them.”Isn’t it time that we stop exploiting illegal labor though? This country was built on and continues to be run on the premise that paying labor less than what is legal or less than what is market(in the case of H1B’s) is the only way to fuel the machine. It started with Indentured Servitude, continued with Slavery, then Sharecropping(which didn’t work for either party so was abandoned), and on to illegal immigration in the form of H1B and illegal immigrant exploitation.We have a huge swath of this country screaming about the lack of jobs, couldn’t those people be put to work in the industries using illegal labor?If we’re doing this because we care about the illegal immigrants and want to give them a better life then we need to codify a plan that allows them to immigrate here legally, in the same numbers as they can illegally, and allow them to participate in America fully.If we’re just paying lip service to make ourselves feel better because we’re exploiting them then…maybe it’s time to stop the exploitation.

    7. creative group

      JLM:we agree with your post in its entirety! No buts or if about it!Refreshing to read the truth without the partisan tightrope views.Thanks. ——————————Requesting your opinion on!The person who crafted The Contract With America (Failure)The person who definitely is an intellectual, author, smart but apparently has no morals or principals. Actually so ambitious and blind he thought putting his head up Trumps posterior, while hoping everyone would forget his past, whould choose him as Vice President. He knows the history of both Cold and Post Cold War better than any Politician. Vigorously supported NATO, NAFTA. Always had used Winston Churchill in validating his points on global policy now wants to be as USATODAY article put it, Neville Chamberlain. Newt Gingrich is the worst sewer rat and Politician. How in the world does the Republican party stomach him. Thought they happily buried him with his 80’s rhetoric. Interested in your thoughts on this sewer rat. (A real compliment actually)

  22. LE

    I took a quick look at the folksy grass roots esq videos at http://www.reasonforreform….Perhaps 30 to 40% of them (the ‘featured’ ones) boil down to “nobody wants to do the shitty work we have, but the immigrants will do this work for us gladly”. [1] I don’t really have a problem with that however I wonder why the unemployed people in this country don’t want to do that shitty work. The obvious reason is because it doesn’t pay well enough to support themselves or their family. (In contrast look at what sanitation workers in NYC can earn as a result of a union contract). We’ve become spoiled by the economic expansion and our economy clearly can’t support the kind of lifestyle people are expecting anymore.Noting that millennials have to live in cities primarily because it’s a fun place to be and so the jobs (example is GE) move to the cities from the outlying areas. So it’s not about effort and your future it’s about having a good experience now.Separately these are the folks behind this site:http://www.renewoureconomy….…[1] And the others (from a quick look) appear to be tearjerkers about how hard their parents worked and where they are now as a result of it.

  23. JLM

    .The tech community preys upon the H1B visa program in a reprehensible manner. What evidence supports that assertion, you ask?Take the case of So Cal Edison’s layoff of 500 American workers to be replaced by 500 foreign workers provided by Infosys, a notorious H1B visa mill which supplies workers at less than half the cost of those they replaced.…Let’s be clear here — there was no shortage of workers. These jobs were filled by Americans. The company is not paying equivalent wages or any benefits — a job shop like Infosys is the actual employer, not SCE, and therefore >>>>>>>>>>>> no benefits.This is an abuse of a system which was intended to shore up a shortage of tech workers, a myth perpetuated by the employers who are looking to unhorse Americans and replace them with jockeys at less than half the cost.This took place at the Irvine, California Tech Center — home to lots of high tech companies who employ similarly software engineers.The Senate has a bill (S153) which intends to increase the number of H1B visas from 65,000 to 195,000 — who’s supporting it? Haha, all of the usual suspects (MS, FB, etc.).This is being sponsored by the likes of Senators Hatch (R), Blunenthal (D), Coons (D), Flake (R), Klobuchar (D), Rubio (Disney) and Heller (R).This is a bipartisan attempt to screw the American worker. There is no shortage of workers for these jobs and if there were, the wages would increase until such time as supply met demand.The system is rigged and the American political establishment and American companies are tying the knots and putting the American workers on the wrong side of the rigging.Sound familiar?The system is rigged and high tech is in it up to their eyeballs.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

    1. creative group

      JLM:we enjoy your business insight on various topics. But usually find your views on politics archaic at best. Your enlightenment on this issue is/was helpful in highlighting the need for reform which doesn’t appear politically in the cards for the two party cartel. Now why do you support the Republican party again? You highlight a problem that the party you support continues to expand upon. Just nuts!

      1. JLM

        .If I were a more thin skinned fellow, I’d likely tell you to fuck off but that is not something I have ever been accused of.Like my utterances on business, my thoughts in regard to politics are the result of having been involved in the enterprise as a veteran, as a member of the Travis Country Republican Party Executive Committee, a Precinct Chair, and an Election Judge. I have been appointed to state boards and lobbied the Legislature of several different states.I likely have one of the most informed opinions of anyone reading this blog (which does not correlate with being right but it does show more than minimal understanding of the subject).My comments are always based on facts and in this instance, I have recited chapter and verse. We are both entitled to our opinions but you can’t have your own facts.You assume facts not in evidence when you suggest I “support the Republican party.” While I am forced to embrace a party in order to participate in the system, I am not a supporter of the party in its entirety.As an example, Ted Cruz is my Senator and I would not piss on his grave — hate long lines.There are a great many things which appear to be anathema to Republicans — such as wholesale education and medical care which I support as if I were Bernie’s long lost son — which I support. Other than not wanting it to be “free”, there is no space to the left of me on this subject. I am against the wholesale propagation of poets as it is a difficult means to make a living.The subject of immigration was introduced by DJ Trump and is now at the center of the national — and this — debate. In that manner, he is the architect of identification, definition, resolution, and change. He owns the space between the ears of both conservatives and liberals. The MSM cannot draw breath without uttering his name on the way out.I am an advocate of the wrestling of ideas — hand to hand combat — as a means of arriving at the best collective idea. Trump gets credit for having started the wrestling match.I support Trump consistent with my theory of political chemotherapy.http://themusingsofthebigre…JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

        1. creative group

          JLM:”We are both entitled to our opinions but you can’t have your own facts.” A variation of the Quote by the late Daniel Moynihan”Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts.” -Daniel Moynihan-Senator/ILLINOIS (Love this quote) But never when misapplied.Your opinions intertwined with facts isn’t just the facts.Where you notifying the blog of something not already known?”Knew you not Pompey?”Do dogs bark?Do liars lie?Is rain wet?Why did we even bother to read your post?

          1. Rob Larson

            creative group:out of all the regular commenters on avc, your comments consistently seem to be condescending, arrogant, and rude. Most everyone else here is generally respectful of opinions even when they (frequently) disagree.I ask you to please raise the level of your dialogue.Even when I agree with your politics/viewpoints, I am embarrassed by your tactics. It comes across as if you are trying to bait people into a flame war. I trust (hope) that such is not the case.

          2. creative group

            Rob Larson:Was your evaluation of our blog entries bias? We read this blog daily and definitely would disagree with your assessment of other contributors are “generally respectful of others opinions”. Apparently we are reading two different blogs. We just addressed Fred and a Professor regarding their dialogue. At this point we acknowledge the tunnel viewings.Another point we would like to address. The weakness in Progressives not being passionate about what they believe and how they deliver it to the opposing view. Stop being In weak! The other side is more passionate and louder than you. (Doesn’t make the view correct)Definitely didn’t agree with 85% of former Representative Weiner’s views but he was at least a passionate fighter for the Progressive causes. If you think being congenital with those who are not will bring you the desired result continue with that personality. That will give you four years of Trump to look forward too.Hopefully this will not fall on deaf ears of the Progressives coming from a true Independent. Get some fire in your bully and stop being melancholy about your positions.PS: Hurting your feelings while addressing a viewpoint wasn’t the intent. We consider ourselves bully busters.

  24. JaredMermey

    At some point shouldn’t we look at this as a prohibition problem as opposed to an immigration problem? Feels more like a problem with the law/process than a problem with people’s actions/ambitions.Feels very much like the time between the 18th and 21st amendment to me. Admittedly, most of my insight into that era came from Boardwalk Empire.

  25. JLM

    .Good read. Thx.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  26. LE

    you are for the immigration as long as they stay on the other side of the tracks.Yes!! Let’s make the top tax rate 70% like in 50’s to the 70’s!!!!http://bradfordtaxinstitute

  27. Lawrence Brass

    Hah. It might have been a boring flight. 🙂

  28. andyswan

    It varies by state and crime type_____________________________

  29. Cam MacRae

    Don’t confuse precision with accuracy. Facts ought be accurate. Sometimes the best we can do is an interval.